anchors aweigh: a nautical decor roundup

nautical1

Summer memories for me are filled with boats — fishing for trout on Eagle Lake, inner tubing behind our black and red Chris-Craft, the feeling of the breeze whipping through wet hair, the rock of the wake. I crave it often, and though we don’t have a boat of our own with which to cruise our many local bodies of water, we do get to enjoy the occasional ferry ride. And I think, if we can’t afford a sea-worthy craft, perhaps we can bring a touch of that nautical feel in to our home instead. It’s best to go light with these accents, so choose one or two pieces to work in to your decor to avoid looking kitschy. — Megan B.

wallacavage kelp

Lets start with the walls:
— A vintage paint-by-number like this vintage sailboat paint-by-number from Etsy seller calloohcallay is an inexpensive ($30!) starting point. Pre-framed and ready to hang!
— For a larger-scale impact, I’ve been coveting this Kelp wallpaper by Adam Wallacavage for Curio Wallcoverings.
— A porthole mirror, like this one at Newport Nautical Decor, $73, would be a great way to add light and space to a small, dark room — plus it’s always fun pretend to be in a ship’s cabin!
— In the bathroom or entryway, use some sailing cleats instead of traditional coat hooks to keep everything shipshape!
see even more maritime madness, after the jump!

From our partners

happy sun ball: new solar lights from poketo

solarballs

Since the days are already getting shorter, we need to harness that dog-day summer sun to illuminate our outdoor evening festivities. What better way to do that than with these modern Solar Light Balls from Poketo. Their robotic, futuristic looks and neon hues are a welcome departure from the typical brushed nickel and bronze of those other solar lights. At $35 each, they are a touch pricier than what I’d typically spend, but even just one waterproof light would give high impact and a year-round shot of fun to any yard. Heck, I think they’re cool enough to use indoors, too! — Megan B.

From our partners

help! i need small space solutions for this microscopic kitchen!

kitchen 1
kitchen 2

It’s been a couple months since we moved into our new place, and despite a hectic work schedule, it’s finally beginning to feel like home. Yes, I have a few photos to get printed and framed, but for the most part, we’re lookin’ good. Well, except for our microscopic kitchen. Our most major pain point to date, sometimes it feels like there’s no way to make this narrow space with minimal counter tops usable for all the cooking we’d like to do, and it’s a factor that’s keeping my stand mixer dream firmly planted in the future. We’ve traded our dish track and tray combo for this handy dish drying mat, which has helped to clear up counter space, but other than that the next step seems to require the installation of some strategic shelving, but the space is so narrow that I’d love to crowd-source an answer on this one. The ceilings in our apartment are very high, so there’s potential for elevated shelving, but some other complications include that the oven is flush to the wall, so any sort of table or narrow storage console along that wall would prevent the door from opening, which is a deal-breaker. Parallel to the views above is an empty wall, but the walkway is so narrow than any possible shelving would have to be far above our heads. Any helpful tips for me? Care to commiserate? — Sarah C.

From our partners

site we’re psyched about: my drunk kitchen

drunkkitchsgrab

Every so often in life, we just need a bit of comic relief. Sadly, Youtube has, for the most part, run its course for me…I just seem to have reached maximum capacity for cute baby animals and guys getting kicked in a bad place. So, when I finally discovered a little video break that not only didn’t bore me, but had me in fits of laughter for days, you can understand why I was in a bit of a giddy state.

The source of all this fun is My Drunk Kitchen, a site run by the hilarious Hannah Hart. The concept is pretty straightforward: our lovely host (who, by the way, is not a cook) gets drunk and cooks. Hilarity ensues. She does give herself a rule of no sharp knives once intoxicated (sound policy), but this is a crafty girl. She happily resorts to chopping lettuce for a taco with a butter knife, or open a package of cheese with her teeth.

Prepare to watch her recipes devolve in direct proportion to her alcohol consumption, and to hear her hurl insults at a recipe for which she has no patience. “Pretentious-ass recipe!” And, of course, there are loads of helpful tips and tricks for your own kitchen adventures. “Butter yo sh**!” comes to mind. And you won’t want to miss her recipe for the perfect mimosa.

It all reminds me of something that would have transpired in the kitchen of my sorority house in college at 3 in the morning (come to think of it, that may not just be imagining on my part…). If you’re short on time? Start with the cookies, then move on to tacos. You won’t regret it.

I find myself rattling off quotes from her little vids constantly…so I’m thinking I need an apron from her swag store, explaining just how I feel about that “pretentious-ass recipe”. Don’t you agree? –Becki S.

From our partners

for your eyes only: homemade privacy film

frostedwindow

I live on the first floor of a multi-unit building, and lucky me, the only window in my living room faces a walkway used by other tenants (who occasionally look in). I needed to find a way to keep wandering eyes out, but still preserve what little light came through my single window. I found a great curtain at Ikea, but it was more transparent than I liked, especially at night. A blackout curtain wasn’t an option for fear it would feel too dark inside, and self-adhesive vinyl privacy film was more than $40 for just one window! Yikes! So, with a little internet reseplace, I found a homemade remedy to fix the problem. I dissolved 4-5 heaping tablespoons of Epsom salts in a cup of room temperature beer, and let rest until the foam subsided (which took about an hour). Then, I used a small spray bottle and to apply three light coats onto my window, letting it dry in between each coat. When I was finished I had a beautiful frosted pattern on my window, and it cost less than $5. Voilà – homemade privacy film! – Rebecca F.

Photo credit: Rebecca Firlik

From our partners